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Book review: The Appetites Of Girls by Pamela Moses


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Fran, Opal, Ruth, and Setsu all have one thing in common – they share the same rooms at Brown University. But scratch the surface and each of their vastly different stories gives them unlikely common ground. Can these girls succeed against the odds of growing up damaged?

Book review: Season Of Shadow and Light by Jenn J McLeod


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Paige Turner is at a crossroads in her life. She packs up her daughter Mati and her step-mother Alice and takes a trip to the country, leaving her husband behind. She's hoping to find something about her past, about the mother she lost as a young girl. But has she bitten off more than she can chew?

Book review: The Liar by Nora Roberts


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When Shelby Pomeroy’s husband dies unexpectedly, she heads home to Tennessee, a young widow with a young daughter and a lot of debt. Hoping to put the past behind her, she settles in with the family she left five years ago, but it turns out trouble has followed her home…

Book review: Girl Underwater by Claire Kells


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Avery Delacorte is on her way home to Brookline for a college break when her plane goes down over the Rocky Mountains. Survival seems tough, but Avery's return to civilisation, and school, is unexpectedly more challenging by a long shot.

Book review: Crash & Burn by Lisa Gardner


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Nicky Thomas wakes up in hospital after a car accident and doesn’t recognise her husband, or remember anything aside from the fact that her little girl, Vero, is missing. However, the police think something suspicious is afoot, particularly when they can find no record of a child in Nicky’s life. Can Nicky recover her memories and uncover her past, laying her ghosts to rest?

Book review: Poole's Paradise by John Vorhaus


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Book review: Wait For Signs by Craig Johnson


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Here it is: the perfect balance of character-building and mystery in twelve neat stories showcasing Walt Longmire, sheriff of Absaroka County.

Book review: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn


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This is a story which, having been turned into a blockbuster starring Ben Affleck, has taken the world by storm. So I had a little read to see what all the fuss was about.

Book review: Crane Mansions by Gert Loveday


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Dr Crane: Visionary. Pigeon expert. Philanthropist. Cake lover. Crane Mansions has been his home since childhood. But there are forces outside his control, all desperate to uncover the secrets surrounding his world.

Book review: Dear Daughter by Elizabeth Little

Book review: Dear Daughter by Elizabeth Little


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Jane Jenkins: socialite. Rule-breaker. Bitch. Murderer?

Book review: Writing Is Easy by Gert Loveday


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What maketh a writer? Critical acclamation? Sales? A drinking problem? A couple of dirty secrets? Breaking into the business is tough, but staying in it unscathed is even tougher.

Book review: Adrian Mole: The Prostrate Years by Sue Townsend


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I would never have considered the possibility of Adrian Mole growing old, were it not for the recent death of his creator Ms Townsend. So it was with a twinge of sadness for a lost childhood author that I picked up her last Adrian Mole story, because, let's face it, Adrian and I grew up together.

Book review: Spirit Of Steamboat by Craig Johnson


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Walt Longmire is back – taken down memory lane by a very special ghost of Christmas past.

Book review: King Killer Chronicles, Day One by Patrick Rothfuss


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Cover

From a distance, it's not too bad. The shadowed, hooded figure is suitably mysterious - there's no indication of a hero or villain, and he appears to be bleeding from the eyes. The foiled copper text is appropriately twiddly, but at least avoids cheesy medievalisation. Likewise, the image, though not surprising, lacks the standard "tiny-figures-'gainst-an-epic-panorama" that makes every fantasy book published since 1981 look exactly the same. Bring back the nude chicks with swords, I say, just before they throw me out of the pub. Pricks. Regardless, close inspection is a bit less favourable. The image is simply a crude collage - you could knock it up in Photoshop in an afternoon. The foliage framing the central image appears in different resolutions simultaneously, there's only one leaf repeated a dozen times, and, as we learn in the first 2 pages of the text, the blood is supposed to be hair. Red hair, yes, but accidentally making the cover look like more Stephen King than Tolkein is really not something an "artist" should do. Goodkind's last books were a bit like this, too. What's going on? Doesn't anyone want to pay painters for beautiful, ornate wrap-arounds any more? Curse you, Photoshop! How many lives must you ruin!!!!!?!!!?

Book review: Fun and Games by David Michael Slater


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Fun and Games is like coming of age in a hall of mirrors. Welcome to everything weird.

Book review: Downtown Owl by Chuck Klosterman


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If this was a bar, it would be one you stopped in out of desperation in a town you've never been to and to which you'll never return, that just happens to have the best fucking jukebox you've ever seen, frighteningly cheap drinks, and provides a blurry night you'll be retelling for years.

Book review: A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian by Marina Lewycka


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If this was an alcoholic drink, it would be a sweet and surprisingly potent plum wine, brewed to an old family recipe.

Book review: Wanted by Mark Millar, JG Jones, Paul Mounts


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If this was fractionally less unpleasant and more visually stylised, it would be Body Bags, my previous titleholder for the Combined Best Art Plus Writing Which Makes You Need Several Showers Afterwards award.

Book review: Confessor by Terry Goodkind


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If this was the final episode of a TV show, it would definitely be Friends - wrinkled characters, an apathetic audience departing mid-show, and plotting you'd have seen already even if you hadn't seen it already.

Book review: Zeppelins West by Joe R. Lansdale


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If this was a comic which is about a thousand times better, it would be The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen.

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